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Jerry Saltz Wins 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Criticism

Jerry Saltz, who has served as the senior art critic for New York magazine since 2006, has been named the 2018 winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism “for a robust body of work that conveyed a canny and often daring perspective on visual art in America, encompassing the personal, the political, the pure and the profane.” In addition to writing for New York magazine, Saltz has contributed art criticism to Art in America, the Village Voice, Frieze, and numerous other publications. The Pulitzer committee called Saltz as an “innovative user of social media” and a “leading voice in the art world at large.” As senior critic for New York magazine, he maintains a regular column on its entertainment division,, and his writing appears often in its print magazine. Saltz was previously nominated for the Pulitzer in 2001 and 2006, when he was senior art critic at the Village Voice.

The ten articles for which Saltz won the prize, all published originally by New York magazine in 2017, display a diverse range of interests, though the selection reveals the critic’s interest in art world controversies; it includes commentary on that year’s contentious Whitney Biennial, a take on the auctioning of a painting purportedly by Leonardo da Vinci at Christie’s, and a piece addressing the Balthus painting that thousands petitioned to have removed from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.  

The finalists for the prestigious prize were New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis—in part for her “sustained dedication to exposing male dominance in Hollywood and decrying the exploitation of women in the film business”—and book critic Carlos Lozada of the Washington Post, whose reviews, the committee stated, “dug deep into the books that have shaped political discourse.” The Pulitzer Prize for Criticism has been presented since 1970, and Saltz’s achievement marks the first time a writer from New York magazine has received the award.